Hills. And flowers. And friends. And adventure.

bluebonnets.jpgTexas in the spring.  This was our first experience with camping in Texas, and oh my it’s been so very nice.  Bluebonnets rule the fields.  And sometimes Indian paintbrush rule the fields:

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We avoided the big cities of Austin and San Antonio and settled in the Hill Country just west of those cities.  For this part of the trip we were happy that our friends Ray and Georgia came from Kansas to join us.  Our mission?  Finding wildflowers.  Did we accomplish our goal?  Oh yes.  The top picture was taken by me, standing outside the tall fence, bending to hold my phone through the fence to get this shot.  But Georgia?  This is how she did it:

geo-and-pics-1
 

Yes, my agile friend just popped her leg up on top of this narrow electrical box deal, hoisted herself up on it then propped her other leg up on top of the fence.  My agile friend and I are the same (short) height.  The physical similarities end there.  πŸ€ͺ😦

My skills are more of the napping and fork-lifting variety.  And spoon-lifting when ice cream is involved.

(Also…. she and her hubby had brought their bicycles .  They spent one day bicycling the historic Missions district and part of the Riverwalk area of  San Antonio.  Twenty eight miles of bicycling.  Impressive. )

While on our wildflower-peeping day trip,  we met a friendly gal on the Willow City Loop who advised us to take the Canyon of Eagles drive near our campground and check out the wildflowers.  And we could possibly see eagles who inhabit that area.  So we did.  I was all a-twitter thinking perhaps I would see my very first eagle.  Sixty three years of life without seeing an eagle?  Pitiful. About time that changed.   

After driving 13 miles we reached a dead end at Canyon of Eagles, a gated resort-type place with an attendant at the entrance.  Ray was our driver.  Ray is very friendly and outgoing.  He’s never met a stranger, I’m sure of that.   After we chatted with the friendly uniformed middle aged woman at the gate, we turned around and started to leave.  But why leave when we hadn’t seen eagles?  Ray turned the car around and convinced the gate chick to let us just drive through the resort to check it out.   As we drove through we kept seeing large birds flying over and we were pretty sure we’d discovered the eagles.  I was pretty excited.  You need to be aware, all four of us are rather advanced in years so our vision isn’t all that spectacular.  So, back at the gate shack Ray did another turn around and drove up to wait for the gate chick to come back out and help us.  After a bit of a wait, she sauntered up to his open window and asked for the third time “What can I help you with now?”  Ray said, “Are those large birds flying overhead eagles?”  She hesitated, looked at each of us, smiled broadly and said, “Do you want them to be?”   We all starting laughing as she said “No, those are vultures.”     My eagle sighting would have to wait for another day.

If you’re in the Hill Country area, another really beautiful place to check out is Pedernales Falls State Park.  It’s near Johnson City (so is the LBJ ranch which is a must-see.  I mean it!!) 

Pedernales from above.jpg
Pedernales Falls from the hiking trail overlook.  See the tiny little people mid-image?   It was 970 steps down to reach the falls.  Ray stayed behind while Georgia, DeWayne and I took the steps.
Georgia enjoying the lower part of the falls
Georgia enjoying the lower falls

Great place to spend the day with a hike & picnic!  

Ben & Dew Pedernales
The water was so clear and beautiful.
picnic at Pedernales.jpg

After four days of fun together, Ray and Georgia headed north for home.  We really enjoyed the time we had with them.

You may be thinking to yourself that you see no evidence that the hubby and I were activating our “sense of adventure.”  Au contraire.  Before leaving the Hill Country, we decided to visit Enchanted Rock Park, near Fredericksburg.  (Fred. is another really fun little town to stroll around, shop, eat, enjoy).  

Enchanted Rock invites you to take a 39 story climb to the top.  We were  I was a bit hesitant to think we should actually pursue this adventure.  But we paid, we parked, we found the trail. Then we pondered our options as we slowly started walking the trail.  A few steps in we were met by an exuberant couple, a few years older than us.  On their way down from the top.  Yes, they did it, and yes we could too.  They told us so.  So we did.  😲😲😲😲

We were here.jpeg
the top.  we were there.  yes we were.
The trail.jpg
The beginning of the 39 story climb.  For the record, DeWayne’s Fit Bit verified that it was indeed 39 stories.

You know I would never publish a picture of myself with such windblown hair if it wasn’t proof of my sense of adventure:

The top
we made it!!!

I must say, the time we spent in the Hill Country was just perfect.  Inks Lake State Park is beautiful.  One could spend time just at this lake, hiking and kayaking and vegging.  

campsite Inks Lake
Our home for the week
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Devil’s Waterhole portion of Inks Lake walking trail.

I could have stayed here forever.  It’s just that amazing.  Although, when visiting with some locals who invited us to sit around their campfire I mentioned how beautiful Texas is and how much I love it.   The man smiled and said, “yes but just wait a month.  It all changes.”

Of course it does.  Everything changes.  Gotta love the moment you’re living. 

Yes.    

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